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Super Bowl Etiquette: Rules for Watching the Big Game

The Super Bowl is just days away, and like many folks, I’ll be heading out to a small party to watch the game.

Super Bowl Party
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Except, like a lot of people, I’m not really going to watch the game. I’m going to see the funny commercials, the halftime show, and find out who won so I can contribute to the conversation when EVERYONE AND THEIR MOTHER is talking about the game the next day. (Judge away, at least I’m honest.)

That said, there are rules — Super Bowl etiquette, if you will — when watching the game.


1

Bring a friend

 
 

Unless you are a big football fan, you're probably going to get bored at some point during the actual game. Bring someone who is as (un)interested in the game as you are to hang out with for the duration. (Ladies, if you're going to watch the game with a bunch of guys, bring someone you can talk to about all the 'annoying stuff' that guys hate hearing. Speaking of which...)

 
2

Don't point out the hot players to the guys in the room

 
 

Ladies, I know better than anyone that there will be some FIIIINE players on the field come Sunday in incredibly tight pants. (Helloooo Luke Wilson, Eric Decker, and Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie!) However, the men you are likely watching the game with will get terribly insecure, only want to see the guys play a good game, and well, it's just not worth the argument. (FYI, this all goes out the window when they start ogling some half-naked hot girl in a random commercial.)

 
3

Don't trash talk your guy's team

 
 

According to a member of my highly-esteemed panel of dudes, talkin' smack about the team your dude is rooting for 'will only cause problems later that night for your relationship.' Again, just not worth the argument, unless you have some kind of cute football rivalry thing happening.

 
4

Don't bring up unrelated grievances

 
 

Mid-game is not the time to bring up the fact that your man didn't do the dishes last night, that he left the toilet seat up AGAIN, or that he never buys you flowers. Men's brains are not wired to multitask the way ours are. On Sunday, they will be focused on football, and only football (and football-related snacks, of course.)

 
5

Know the basics

 
 

I'm at a bit of an advantage since I love college football, so I know a decent amount about the game. Knowing the basics helps a lot: Each game has 4 quarters, 15 minutes each. (Important: football minutes take wayyyyy longer than actual minutes.) The offense has 4 chances (downs) to move the ball at least 10 yards. If they don't get the yardage, the ball goes to the other team. If they get it past the 10 yards, it goes back to first down. If they score, it's called a touchdown and it's worth 6 points. Then they have the chance to score an extra point by kicking the ball through the uprights. (They can also go for a 2-point conversion, but that's a WHOLE other thing.) If the ball is kicked through the uprights, but NOT right after a touchdown, it's a field goal, and it's worth 3 points.

 
6

Don't ask a million questions during the game

 
 

My 'experts' seem to agree that asking too many questions is one of the most annoying things anyone can do during the game. If you don't understand the game, try to learn a few of the rules before hand (see #5!), and whatever you do, don't ask, 'why are they doing this?' in the middle of a play. (This is akin to asking a million questions during a movie. It's distracting, and often causes you both to miss crucial information) It also goes back to the multitasking thing...they just can't handle it. You probably have a smartphone, Google it.

 
7

Talking fashion will get you the side-eye

 
 

I find this incredibly dumb, but apparently most guys find it annoying when people comment on the colors/uniforms. Ultimately it comes down to dudes just 'not car[ing] about fashion during one of the most intense games of the year.' (Whatever, if I hear ONE guy mention ANYTHING about something a player or team is wearing, I'm calling BS.)

 
8

The less you know about the game, the better your chances of winning the box pool

 
 

Okay, so maybe that's not true, but it certainly always seems like it. While we're on the subject, if you somehow honestly don't know, don't ask how the box pool works. Don't ask if you won...just don't even bring it up. If you are in a pool, and don't understand it, just hope for the best, and if someone tells you you won, just be happy. (I seriously don't understand how anyone could not get how it works though. It's matching numbers, come on.)

 
9

Don't show up empty handed

 
 

Why? Because it's just rude not to bring anything and expect others to feed you over the course of the evening. And don't just show up with one bag of chips, either. If you're going to a party, be adequately prepared. Find out how many people will be in attendance, and bring enough for everyone. At the very least bring a 6-pack of beer. Contribute SOMETHING.

 
10

Remember that most people aren't just watching for the halftime show

 
 

I'm not a big pro football fan. I don't have a regular team to root for, and since none of the NY teams are in the game, I honestly couldn't care less who wins. However, most of the people I'll be watching the game with DO care. It would be really selfish of me to keep bringing up the halftime show when everyone else is interested in what is going on in that moment.

 

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